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|In an attempt to appeal to design-conscious consumers, major athletic shoe brands like Nike and Adidas have been investing heavily in 3-D printing. Now, New Balance is aiming to beat both Nike and Adidas to the finish line.|
Today, the company announces a new running shoe model that incorporates a 3-D printed midsole. The shoe will be available in April in Boston as a limited edition collection, with the release timed to coincide with the Boston Marathon. New Balance will sell "a couple hundred" of them in 2016 and intends to expand their retail operations to more global metropolitan locations thereafter.
The design is an update to New Balance’s Fresh Foam Zante model. But instead of gluing a traditional foam midsole into the shoe, the new shoe will incorporate a 3-D printed midsole. The upper of the shoe will still be composed of traditional cloth. Though New Balance has not released exact price figures, it says the market price will be higher than New Balance’s regular range of running shoes and hopes they will appeal to serious amateur runners interested in innovative footwear.
3-D printed midsoles have generally been too heavy and rigid to benefit athletes, but New Balance says it has found a material that achieves an acceptable mix of flexibility and weight for performance wear. This year, New Balance partnered with South Carolina-based 3D Systems to incorporate one of the company's’ new elastomer materials into its printing process.
|Since 1918, Idaho Steel has manufactured, maintained and customized food-processing equipment. Having built their reputation on quality products that address specific customer needs, the company turned to 3D Systems’ SLS solutions as a means to create unique, project-specific parts more efficiently and effectively. Leveraging the power of the ProX 500 and DuraForm® ProX nylon material, Idaho Steel has achieved accelerated project timelines, greater design freedom, and enhanced product performance.|
|Read more on http://www.3dsystems.com/press-releases/3d-systems-host-webinar-functional-fabrication-highlighting-advantages-prox-500-sls|
For the past three decades, rapid prototyping has been synonymous with 3D printing. The technology has come a long way with faster printing speeds, true-to-CAD part accuracy, smoother surface finishes and sharper resolutions. A wide variety of material options are now available from plastics to metals, and many can mimic production quality end-use products.
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